David Solomon examines major works and ideas in Kabbalah over the past five centuries in this final part of his lecture series, A Kabbalistic Journey Through Time.
The talk explores the contributions of:
- The GR”A, the Vilna Gaon
- Rabbi Chaim Luzzatto, the Ramchal
- Rabbi Naphtali Bacharach.
It also discusses the ideas of the following rabbis:
- Israel ben Eliezer, the Baal Shem Tov
- Dov Ber ben Avraham of Mezeritch, the Maggid
- Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk, the Gramam
- Schneur Zalman of Liadi
- Nachman of Breslov
- Yitzchak Izaak Chaver
- Shalom Sharabi, the Rashash
- Yehuda Ashlag, the Baal Hasulam
- Shlomo Elyashiv, the Leshem.
Some of the concepts covered in the lecture include:
- Lurianic kabbalah is an extended allegory
- Revelation and concealment in relation to creation
- The people of Israel in cosmic and world history
- The revelation of esoteric knowledge, the secret level of Torah
- The Torah is light
- Darkness is a reality, not merely an absence
- The role of Sabbateanism
- The intersection of Kabbalah and Chassidut.
In addition to providing an overview of the development of Jewish mystical ideas since the AR”Y (Rabbi Isaac Luria), David explains the context of the examined thinkers and their work and provides historical background to their contributions.